SUP Electronic Newsletter: January 2008

President's Message

Josep Lloreta

The mission of the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology is to serve the scientific community, particularly all those individuals involved in the use of electron microscopy in diagnosis and research. Primarily conceived as an association of electron microscopists coming from anatomical and clinical pathology backgrounds, the scope of the Society has expanded over time to include immunohistochemistry, as well as molecular and cellular biology. Nevertheless, rather than focusing on mere technological developments, the main goal of the Society has been a higher quality of patient care. In this regard, the information provided by electron microscopy continues to serve as the gold standard in many settings and continues to have a decisive impact in others. In spite of this, it is often neglected to the benefit of other, sometimes more expensive and controversial, techniques. Unfortunately, practical and economical misconceptions lay behind the current decrease in the application of electron microscopy in pathology. Now, more than ever, it is important for the Society's members to become active supporters of electron microscopy by making sure that it is used whenever relevant information can be gained from it, disseminating its values and ensuring the maintenance of active electron microscopy labs.

The Executive Committee of the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology is determined to make every possible effort to agglutinate all those in the field and to give institutional and academic support for their needs. Every year the Meeting of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology hosts the Companion Meeting of the SUP, whose attractive programs have been praised by those who have attended. The next Companion Meeting will be held in Denver next March. An outstanding panel of speakers will present an update on storage diseases. Another constant feature of the SUP is the biannual Ultrapath meeting. This year for Ultrapath XIV, a very attractive scientific and social programme has been arranged once more. It will be held in a unique historical location on the Greek island of Crete. The Newsletter, the special discount rates for Ultrastructural Pathology, and the active website all provide additional settings for interaction and for the exchange of ideas and knowledge. In addition, the pathologist-in-training awards constitute another important feature, aimed at recruiting young scientists with an interest in ultrastructural pathology. As we are well aware, they are the future of the Society and, more important, the future of electron microscopy. New features are currently being prepared, bearing in mind that improvements in the SUP will result in benefits for its members, and ultimately, for their patients. Nevertheless, in this enterprise, the officers of the Society should not have to stand alone: in this message I call upon you to bring your thoughts, input, ideas, criticisms, and innovative proposals to the table. Nothing can be more important to any society than what its members have to say, and the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology is no exception. Please send us your messages as soon as possible. We are asking for your collaboration on behalf of the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology and, most important, in pursuit of excellence in patient care.

Historical Minute

An Informal, Incomplete and (quite possibly) Inaccurate Early History of the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology - An interview with Gary Mierau

Associate Editor: Luann Goin

Luann: Gary, congratulations on being appointed to succeed Charles Faulkner as Historian for the Society.

Gary: For his many years of faithful service, Charlie is the one who deserves to be congratulated. I tip my hat to him.

Luann: Tell us a little about the early days of the Society... how did things get started?

Gary: Having not yet taken possession of the archival records, I'll have to rely here upon my fast failing and frequently faulty faculties. Being unencumbered by the facts, however, will make this a somewhat easier task. As I recall, it all started in the Ship Tavern at The Brown Palace Hotel in Denver with Victor Gould attempting to teach me all that might be known about the finer points of drinking Cognac. Being unfortunately a very slow learner, my mind had by then begun not working too clearly and I unwittingly let slip some nonsensical remark about there being a need for someone to organize a conference relating to diagnostic ultrastructural pathology. As those who knew Victor will attest, the man had an uncanny ability to get people to do things that they really did not want to do. And so, in the summer of 1982, I ended up hosting such a conference in Aspen, Colorado.

Luann: This was the first of the Ultrapath Conferences?

Gary: It turned out to be so... though it was not envisioned to be anything more than a one-time event.

Luann: How then did this come to happen, and how did the initiation of these conferences relate to the formation of the Society?

Gary: Well this week-long conference turned out to be a delightful Woodstockian sort of affair, where people from distant parts of the world who had previously only known of each other came to truly know each other. We had so much fun together, and learned so much from each other, that most of us wanted to do it again. And, so we did... two years later in Seattle, with Sam Hammar and John Bolen this time serving as hosts. And then again, in 1986, in Ottawa, where conference host Irv Dardick invited a group of us over to his home for a meal and to begin discussing the possibility of forming some sort of an organization. The memory that I retain most vividly of that evening is of the Bunt cake that was served to us by Irv's wife Grace. I do seem to retain also some foggy recollection of us deciding then to form a "Diagnostic Ultrastructural Pathology Club." And, being at the time in a hyper-caloric stupor and unable to defend myself, I ended up being elected (Shanghaied, really) to serve as its first president.

Luann: But the organization survived, nevertheless?

Gary: Indeed! Under the more capable leadership Irv Dardick, and then a succession of later presidents and other fine executive officers, the Club did eventually recover from this stumbling start and went on to evolve into the well run Society that it is today.

Luann: Is this the manner in which such things normally happen?

Gary: Well, not exactly. Generally a group of like-minded people first gather themselves into a society, then start organizing conferences, and finally begin publishing a journal. We did it backwards. We started with the journal Ultrastructural Pathology (created by Jan Vincents Johannessen and Jahn Nesland), from which we borrowed the subscriber list to initiate a conference, from which sprang the Society.

Well, its time now for the Historian's morning nap... so we are going to have to leave it there.

Luann: Thank you.

Gary: ZZZZ...

From the Editors' Desk

Luann Goin

Logo Contest / Rocco Agostini Memorial Award

Winning Logo

Rocco Agostini, who died on April 20, 1999, was the chief electron microscopist at The Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh for 30 years. He was a very warmhearted and kind individual, and an extremely competent microscopist. He helped train residents, co-authored many publications, and provided valued assistance with the interpretation of diagnostic studies. Proving that one need not possess an advanced degree in order to participate actively in Society affairs, Rocco was a frequent visitor to the lectern at our scientific meetings. We continue to admire his passion and spirit, and lift him up as a model for others to emulate. To honor the memory of this friend, colleague and former member, a contest was held to design a logo that might be associated with the Ultrapath Conference. It is a pleasure now to announce that the winner of that contest, and recipient of the Rocco Agostini Memorial Award (a grant of $1,000 for professional travel), is Eric Wartchow. The winning design was selected (using an observer-blinded mechanism) by the Executive Council. Congratulations, Eric!


Business Meeting

The Society's annual business meeting will be held in Denver on Sunday, March 2, 2008, immediately following the USCAP/SUP Companion Meeting.

New! The Myofibroblast

The Myofibroblast: A Study of Normal, Reactive and Neoplastic Tissues with an Emphasis on Ultrastructure. Brian Eyden PhD, Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, United Kingdom. 2007, ISSN 1122-9497, Soft cover, 166 pages, 183 figures, 762 references. Price: £30.00 + postage and packing. For details and sales information, contact Brian Eyden at: PO Box 422, SALE M33 4UL, United Kingdom (Tel +44 161 446 3292), or by email

Relatively new! Functional Ultrastructure.

Functional Ultrastructure.An Atlas of Tissue Biology and Pathology.
Margit Pavelka and Jürgen Roth. 2005, ISBN: 978-3-211-83564-7, Hard cover, 326 pages, 157 illustrations.
Springer: $179.00.

Pathologist-In-Training CD-ROM

Available again! Primer of Diagnostic Electron Microscopy for Pathologists-in-Training. Published by Pathology Images Inc. & Society for Ultrastructural Pathology. This CD-ROM can be ordered ($60 USD) online

Journal Subscription Discount

A discounted personal subscription to Ultrastructural Pathology is offered to all members of the Society for 45% off the regular subscription price. Follow the subscription directions in the journal, but inform the publisher of your membership and request the 45% discount.

Upcoming Events

Future SUP Meetings

USCAP/SUP Companion Meeting: Denver, Colorado USA (Spring, 2008) Sunday, March 2, 2008
Program ...

Ultrapath XIV: Aghia Pelaghia, Crete Greece (July 6-11, 2008)

Ultrapath XIV promises to continue the tradition of providing its' attendees a professionally enlightening and socially entertaining experience. Program highlights include sessions on:

  • Pediatric Pathology
  • Cytology
  • Tumor Diagnostics
  • Renal Pathology
  • Neuropathology
  • Thoracic Pathology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Immuno EM
  • Oncology
  • Veterinary Pathology
  • Introduction to Normal Tissue (focusing on the ultrastructure of the Liver)

Dr. Irene Voloudakis-Baltatzis and the Local Organizing Committee have produced a terrific website containing all the essential conference information and everything you need to know about the wonderful venue and social excursions.


Ultrapath XV: Richmond, Virginia, USA (Summer, 2010)

Details to be announced as meeting date approaches.

In addition to USCAP and SUP meetings, the following microscopy-themed meetings may be of interest.


FOM 2008 - Focus on Microscopy
April 13 to 16, 2008, Osaka-Awaji, Japan,
Contact: Katsumasa Fujita
Department of Applied Physics, Osaka University
2-1 Yamadaoka, Suita,
Osaka 565-0871, Japan
Phone: ++81-6-6879-7847
Fax: ++81-6-6879-7330
More Information ...


SCUR & SSSR 2008- Post IID 2008 Satellite 5th Joint Meeting of SSSR (Japan) and SCUR May 17 to 19, 2008, Otsu Prince Hotel, Otsu-shi, Shiga 520-8520 (near Kyoto), Japan
Contact: Dr. Akemi ISHIDA-YAMAMOTO
Assoc. Prof., Secretary General
Asahikawa Medical College, Department of Dermatology Midorigaoka Higashi
2-1-1-1 JP-078-8510 Asahikawa, Japan
Phone: ++81-(166)-68-2523
More Information ...


MicroScience 2008 - International Conference and Exhibition June 23 to 26, 2008, ExCel, London, UK
Contact: The Royal Microscopical Society
37/38 St Clements Oxford OX4 1AJ, UK
Phone: ++44 (0)1865 248 768
Fax: ++44 (0)1865 791237
More information ...


Ultrapath XIV Conference - The meeting of interest to pathologists, electron microscopists, electron microscopy technologists, oncologists and research scientists July 6 to 11, 2008, Heraklion, Crete, Greece.
More Information ...


Microscopy & Microanalysis 2008 - Annual Meeting of the Microscopy Society of America and the Microbeam Analysis Society August 3 to 7, 2008, Albuquerque Convention Center
Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
Contact: Nicole Guy
MM2008 Conference Manager
11260 Roger Bacon Drive, Suite 402, Reston, VA 20190
USA Phone: ++703-964-1240 x14
Fax: ++703-964-1246
More Information ...

ICHC2008 - 'Imaging of Cell Dynamics' - 13th International Congress of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry August 23 to 27, 2008
Medical University of Gdansk, Gdansk, Poland
Contact: Piotr Wierzbicki
Polish Society of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry
Debinki 1 PL-80-211 Gdansk, Poland
Phone: ++48 58 3491430
Fax: ++48 58 3491436
More information ...


EMC 2008 - 14th European Microscopy Congress (former EUREM)
September 1 to 5, 2008
Eurogress Centre, Aachen, Germany,
Contact: Prof. J. Mayer
GFE Central Facility for Electron Microscopy
Ahornstrasse 55 D-52074 Aachen
Germany Phone: ++49 241 80 24 345
Fax:++49 241 80 22 313


Histochemistry and Microscopy for Cell Biology and Pathology 2008 - 50th Symposium of the Society for Histochemistry
October 1 to 4, 2008, Interlaken, Switzerland
Contact: Ingrid Grob
Division of Cell and Molecular Pathology
Department of Pathology
University of Zurich Schmelzbergstr.
12 CH-8091 Zurich, Switzerland
Fax: ++41 44 255 4407 E-mail:
More information ...

(The editors wish to thank Petr Schauer, for compiling this list and allowing its' use in our newsletter.)

Eric Wartchow Wartchow

Luann Goin

Newsletter Editor Successors Needed

Two years ago your current editors were asked to resurrect the formal SUP newsletter and distribute it in an e-format. In doing so, we agreed to produce a new issue quarterly for a period of two years. It has truly been a rewarding privilege for us to serve the society in this role; however, we have now reached the end of our term. Consequently, this will be the final issue distributed by the current team. Anyone interested in undertaking the task of producing future issues can contact us with questions. Once again, we thank the membership for this opportunity and look forward to serving the society in some other capacity whenever possible.